All About Guns California

New Poll: Majority of California Dems, Independents Worry About Being Victims of Gun Violence by DANTE GRAVES

Sixty-three percent of California voters said they worry that gun violence will affect them or someone close to them according to results released from a survey by UC Berkeley and the LA Times in the wake of high-profile shootings in the state. Another 30% claimed to be “very concerned,” as well.

The survey also revealed a disproportional concern among women, city residents and people of color in the state in terms of the fear of gun violence.

Democrats ranked the highest in fear, with 78% expressing concern compared to 61% of unaffiliated independent voters and 36% of Republicans.

Tense political polarization on the 2A “is evident everywhere in this poll,” said Mark DiCamillo, director of the Institute of Governmental Studies.

Poll results. (Photo: David Lauter/LA Times)

“What was most striking to me had to do with the fears of gun violence affecting their own personal lives. I wouldn’t have expected there to be a huge partisan divide on that,” DiCamillo said. “But the perception is very different. Republicans are not expressing nearly as much concern about it as Democrats. And that really ties into their views on guns more generally.”

White, male and rural voters were less likely to report a fear of being personally affected by gun violence than black, Asian, Latino and female voters who lived in urban and suburban areas, the poll reported.

Vice president of policy and programs at Brady: United Against Gun Violence, Christian Heyne, referred to the results as “jarring.”

“I don’t think there are people in other industrialized countries throughout the world that would have a similar percentage of fear by population. And I think that’s because we stand uniquely in a position where gun violence is a reality, that our laws and access to weapons mean that no community can feel safe from gun violence,” said Heyne.

Forty-Five percent of those surveyed said stricter gun control laws would help a great deal in preventing mass shootings, and 18% said they would help some, while 34% said they would not help much making the partisan divide evident.

Eighty-Eight percent of registered Democrats said stricter laws would be somewhat or strongly effective, it dropped to 61% among non-party voters and dove to 20% for registered Republicans. Among the Republicans surveyed, 78% said stricter laws would not be very effective.

Fifty-eight percent said that creating more mental health services and expanding existing ones would help a great deal to reduce mass shootings, compared with 10% who said it would not help much. The partisan divide in this category was much smaller than on gun regulation.

The poll also revealed a widespread lack of information on whether or not the state’s so-called red-flag law is effective. Forty-one percent of voters reported believing the law was not being used enough, as opposed to just 6% who said it was being used too much. But 47% said they didn’t know enough about it to have an opinion.

Tighter rules on firearm possession was favored by 60% of voters surveyed compared to 34% who believe preserving the right to bear arms was more important when asked if it was better to impose restrictions on gun ownership or to protect 2nd Amendment rights

Eighty-six percent of Democrats said limiting gun ownership is more important than protecting gun rights. 57% of unaffiliated voters agreed as well, compared with 12% of Republicans surveyed.

The report follows a deadly stream of gun violence in the state including the back-to-back mass shootings in Monterey Park and Half Moon Bay. These fatal shootings renewed calls among Democrats for greater restrictions on who can legally possess a firearm in California and initiated several new pieces of gun-control legislation.

One of the bills would ban gun giveaways, raffles, and lotteries. Others impose an excise tax on firearms and ammunition and a ban on body armor.

Firearm homicide and suicide rates per the CDC. Black males between the ages of 10 and 24 suffered the most in 2020. According to the report, they were 21 times more likely than their white counterparts to die from gun homicides. Put another way, young black males make up two percent of the U.S. population but accounted for nearly 38 percent of all gun homicides in 2020, as a Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence analysis explained.

Second amendment activists in California believe the sweeping SCOTUS ruling against restrictive gun laws will stop these efforts. Currently, courts all over California are trying to figure out how to apply the Bruen decision to current and future laws.

Sam Paredes, executive director of Gun Owners of California, wasn’t too surprised by the numbers in the poll that highlighted the partisan divide over firearms.

“But the reality is it doesn’t matter what anybody thinks about imposing more gun control or anything. We have the 2nd Amendment. It is clearly defined,” Paredes said.

Paredes further explained that the window for regulation is closing on their efforts.

“There’s no more hardcore gun control stuff that [Democrats] can do, because they’re already doing it all. And they are sad because they know that a lot of those laws are going to go away very, very soon.”

The Berkeley IGS poll surveyed 7,512 California registered voters online in English and Spanish from Feb. 14 to 20. The results are estimated to have a margin of error of 2 percentage points.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *